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Author Topic: Phase One IQ140 vs Hasselblad H4D-50  (Read 4581 times)
whiskey01
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« on: February 27, 2013, 09:06:55 AM »
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Hi Everyone,

Overview

Over the past year and a half, I have been waiting patiently for Canon to come out with a new camera with higher resolution and potentially a larger sensor (says rumors).  This weekend, I grew tired of waiting. 

I have decided to make the step up to mf.  I have done a bit of research and from chatting with two local dealers (one for phase, one for hassy) I am able to purchase the IQ140/645DF+/80mm (new) or the H4D-50/80mm (Certified Pre-Owned) for a difference of a $3k (phase more expensive).

I will be keeping my canon system as a back up.  The work I do ranges from food/still life/people photography (80% of time my camera is on a tripod) to landscapes which I love using up to 400mm (100% on tripod) and filters from Lee and Singh ray. 

Here are my pros and cons of each potential system

H4D-50

Pros

I am very familiar with this system. 
I love how I only need one battery
enjoy using the tilt-shift adaptor, think its brilliant!
like the 300mm option they have along with the teleconverter. 
Love the 50mp resolution and think its a sweet spot for my work.  Also like that its a full frame sensor and not cropped. 
True Focus seems pretty awesome

Cons 

Stuck with one system (can't use technical cameras),
while I am familiar with phocus I tend to like C1 more. 
its certified pre-owned and everything should be fine, the phase would be brand new.

IQ140

Pros 

Body/Back seems more rugged, and for my landscapes I "feel" it maybe be better for the different weather conditions than the hassy. 
Love the Touch screen/Retina LCD, just seems so field friendly.  Touch focus and viewing images at 100% on the LCD to check focus is great!
The option to use a technical camera later on when I have more funds. 
Like how integrated c1 can potentially be.  I will be keeping my canon and it just makes sense to be able to use c1 for both systems.  Profoto integration for my studio lights (which I dont have yet, but looking at). 
Like the v-grip idea to trigger profoto lights.

Con 

would ideally want the 160 but its a huge price gap another $8k. 
Not sure about the crop sensor, seems like I will be stepping up to mf, but only half way in my quest for bigger sensor. 
40mp is better than what I have now, but the hassy is 50 and larger sensor. 
have to worry about two batteries, and I'd imagine when I'm out doing landscape, I'll have to carry a twice as much.
maybe not as good value compared to the hassy

So now I'm stuck.  I'm going to be visiting both dealers and ask if I can test them out, but I'm not sure if that will change much of my opinion.  I "plan" to keep whichever digital back I get for 3 years or more.  I have also considered the P65+ however after seeing the features of the touch screen/retina lcd, its as future proof.

Hopefully you guys can chime in and help me out!  Its so much money and I'm not as familiar or technical as you guys are! Help Cheesy
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Doug Peterson
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« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2013, 09:31:08 AM »
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A few random thoughts (from an openly biased point of view):

First and foremost don't OVERLY concern yourself with the technicals. Fact of the matter is both of those systems will produce great image quality. I would be the first to point out there will be image quality differences and they may (or may not) matter to you. But in all likelihood the other factors here will end up mattering more. So if you have a feeling you'll simply "enjoy" one camera more than another, or you like the feel of shooting with one over the other don't overlook those factors. In the end, great art has been created by nearly every camera ever made, and both of these cameras are very good.  

- The new LiOn battery for the Phase One body really does last in the neighborhood of 10k shots. So while I agree that the H4D-50 has an advantage regarding having one battery instead of two, this advantage I think is much smaller now that changing batteries on the P1 body is something you don't have to do very often - at all. Also, the separate battery for the digital back means the P1 back does not require any external/additional power to shoot on a tech camera or a view camera. If you plan on having the back for many years to come the chances are pretty decent you'll get the tech camera bug at some point (you write that you "can't use tech cameras" with the H4D-50; that is definitely not true, you can. Though there are several big advantages P1 has when using a tech camera.).

- The built-in two-axis level for the IQ is really nice for landscape. It's arbitrarily easy to get level in the field, and when you get back from the field you can select all and "auto horizon correct". In addition you can auto correct the perspective/keystone of the image so that if you did a bit of a tripod tilt up/down and want the image to maintain a proper vertical perspective you can do that with a single click (not as good as doing it in camera for big movements, but just as good for small movements and better/faster than doing it in photoshop).
« Last Edit: February 27, 2013, 09:35:07 AM by Doug Peterson » Logged

DOUG PETERSON (dep@digitaltransitions.com), Digital Transitions
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EricWHiss
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« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2013, 10:02:30 AM »
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Some other things to consider... not in any particular order

Software  (C1 is easier for me and feature rich)
Vibration (DF is not so great for long lenses)
Sync speed (DF only some lenses have adequate sync speed all okay on H)
Auto focus   (True focus is excellent)
Hi ISO  (H4-40 may be the best - not sure about H4-50)
Ergonomics - have you tried both in your hands?
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Pics2
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« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2013, 10:22:09 AM »
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I would suggest you to reconsider P65+. Are you sure you need all IQ series features? If you do, keep an eye on used IQ160, or a demo unit at your local dealer. The bigger the better (sensor) is really true here. But, since you are lucky to have a dealer near by, it's very helpful to try all of these cameras.
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yaya
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« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2013, 11:08:08 AM »
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Just throwing a spanner in...

How about an Aptus-II 10 on a DF+?
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gerald.d
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« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2013, 11:16:08 AM »
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Wow. You have a very conflicting set of pros and cons - not going to be an easy decision, that's for sure.

I think you need to approach this from a slightly different perspective to reach a conclusion (although based on your language, I think the conclusion is already inevitable).

Your pros for one system are the most significant con for the other. For example:

Phase? No tilt-shift adapter. That is a big con for the Phase system, and you don't list it as such.

Kind regards (from a very happy IQ180 owner),

Gerald,

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whiskey01
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« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2013, 12:50:05 PM »
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Doug

Thanks for clarifying about using the hasselblad on a tech camera.  I just spoke with someone, and they mentioned that in order to use the hassy on a tech camera, I'd need to use it with an external battery to power up the back.  It all makes sense now, and I like the IQ more because I don't have to buy another battery, and its more integrated.  I will be going to the store tomorrow to get a feel of the 645DF+ since I've never used it before. 

When you say you notice a difference in image quality, are you referring to crop vs full frame, or phase vs hassy?

EricWHiss

Hmmm interesting point about vibration.  Never occurred to me.  Is there a lot of vibration when used with the mirror up?  Sync speed isnt much of an issue since I use some daylight for food photography and we aren't stopping motion for those.  How does the 645DF+ AF compare?  Ive only used the H4D a few things, and it seemed sufficient compared to my canon system, would it be safe to say that the 645DF+ is slower than the hassy? 

Pics2

My friend has an old back that I can trade in, so with that, the price of a used P65+ might be close to the new IQ.  I also just have a tough time thinking of the P65+ when Ive seen what can be done with an IQ back. 

yaya

Never thought about them, will do some research tonight!

gerald.d

Its tough right!!!  I omitted phase not having a tilt shift system because I would mainly use tilt shift when shooting landscapes and I will most likely get a tech camera.  With that I think I'll have more options. 


Thanks Everyone for your input.  Still haven't made a decision, but with more info things are a tad clearer.
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Doug Peterson
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« Reply #7 on: February 27, 2013, 12:59:09 PM »
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Ive only used the H4D a few things, and it seemed sufficient compared to my canon system, would it be safe to say that the 645DF+ is slower than the hassy? 

I would say the exact opposite. But hopefully you get a chance to handle both bodies and make up your own mind. Taking other people's opinions on autofocus performance is only going to get you so far. Also, a lot of people confuse the DF+ with the DF or AF (previous generation bodies). The DF+ autofocus is quite good.
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Doug Peterson
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« Reply #8 on: February 27, 2013, 01:17:33 PM »
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Doug

When you say you notice a difference in image quality, are you referring to crop vs full frame, or phase vs hassy?

yes yes and yes. All will produce different renderings. "Image Quality" often get's portrayed as a singular objective measure that can only be "better" or "worse" but as just one example the IQ140 uses a Dalsa sensor and the H4D-50 uses a Kodak sensor which are widely known to have different color renderings; no one can tell you for sure which color rendering (Kodak or Dalsa) you'll prefer, but I can promise you you'd see a difference between the two.
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Enda Cavanagh
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« Reply #9 on: February 27, 2013, 02:07:10 PM »
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Also remember if you decide to go ahead later and get a view camera that you need to shoot a dark exposure for the IQ. That is a huge stumbling block for me. Think of it, for every exposure you shoot, you have to follow it with a 2nd exposure of equal length. IE you shoot a 60 second exposure, than you have to shoot a 2nd 60 second exposure and start tapping those toes. I tested an IQ 160 recently and although it is a lovely back it is the main reason why I could never realistically work with it.

The H4D also as a built in spirit level.

You can use a Hasselblad Back on a view Camera. You don't need to shoot a dark exposure.

A quantum turbo 3 battery back hooked up to a H4D Back on a view camera will outlast any alternative. I just spent 6 days shooting landscape. I charged the battery once in that time.
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whiskey01
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« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2013, 09:58:54 PM »
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Doug

Will be trying it out for the first time tomorrow!

Enda Cavanagh

Thanks for your input!  Didnt know you had to do two exposures.  Is that for all view cameras and the IQ backs?  or based on how long the exposure is?  This would be something that I would most likely forget to do often!  Do view cameras require a battery as well?  I haven't dont much research but saw a few threads with alpas and they look so nice! 
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kdphotography
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« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2013, 10:49:18 PM »
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I think there is a misunderstanding regarding the "dark frame" that Phase backs make when photographing long exposures.  

Phase backs do NOT require you to "remember" to take a "dark frame" during long exposures; a dark frame is done automatically by the MFDB.  The digital back then uses this information to better process noise in the image.  I have not found this to be an issue, particularly since long exposure capability of the IQ180 is a rather paltry 2 minutes.  At ISO 35 I find myself rarely over 30 seconds or a minute when doing longer exposures.

A dark frame is only taken by the back for long exposures only---not every frame that you take with a Phase DF or other camera such as a technical camera (no batteries).

It's easier than you think.  I find using a technical camera easier (and more enjoyable) to use with a MFDB than a Phase DF or a DSLR.

It is a good practice to take an LCC frame to compensate for movements when using a technical camera, adjusting in post.  This too becomes rather easy to incorporate into your own personal workflow.

It seems to me the ideal system for you would require a slightly higher budget:  used/certified IQ160, H4x, and a technical camera.  Best of both worlds!  Grin   Personally, I'd place more emphasis on the system that gives you more personal enjoyment.  After that, all else will fall into place.
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EricWHiss
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« Reply #12 on: February 27, 2013, 11:35:16 PM »
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Whisky,
I'm not a fan of the DF or any of its previous generations. I shoot with an Rollei AFi which I love.  I have the AFi-ii 12 back which is essentially the same as an Aptus 12 R but built for the Rollei Hy6/AFi.   If I didn't shoot with the AFi then I would probably have an H4.   I have a older hasselblad CF 528 back also which I sometimes use as well.   Previously I worked with a phase back.  In a way they are all good.  There is more differences in the camera bodies and lenses for me than the backs, especially if you shoot tethered a lot like I do.  Read about the DF's.  Many have complained about vibration with longer lenses and slow shutter speeds even when locked down on tripods.   Viewfinder is significantly better in the the Rollei and the H bodies than in the DF bodies too.  Forgot about that.  Also you can use WLF and prisms on the H and Hy6 whereas with the DF you are stuck with the one option.
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whiskey01
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« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2013, 09:56:24 AM »
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kdphotography

Thank you for clarifying!  That isn't so bad then, and seems easier to handle.  I'm really leaning away from the IQ140.  This may sound weird, but I saw the sensor of the 140 and just felt very dslr Sad  Sad I know since the quality is great, but just doesn't seem right. 

EricWHiss

 Thanks for your suggestions.  I think I'm going to start refocussing my efforts.  I feel I'm asking too much for my budget. 

My first goal now is to get the best sensor I can.  I played with the DF+ body and I have experience with the H bodies, and to be honest, they are about the same to me.  I love the fact that I can use the Hasselblad back on a technical camera, just opens up more options. 

I've also downloaded sample files from Hasselblad to see the difference between 50 vs 50ms vs 200ms.  While the native file from the 200ms was massive, it was nice to see that when blown up and with a bit of sharpening, the 50 and 50 ms weren't too far off.  Its still not as good as the 200ms, but the quality is there.  I don't imagine needing to print larger than a 60" wide, so I think a 50 mp sensor from hassy or a P65+ is a great spot for me. 
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